- 11 Oct 2020
One of the key arguments for the GOAT case in the Federer-Nadal-Djokovic era has always been the number of Grand Slams won, and with Novak Djokovic’s lopsided 6-0, 6-2, 7-5 loss against a spotless Rafael Nadal in the 2020 Roland-Garros final, the Serb fell behind the Swiss Maestro and the King of Clay by three titles.
Too little too late?
With age being a natural concern, along with the uprising of younger players like Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev, the clock is certainly ticking for the world No 1, who still looked dominant in this 2020 campaign. However, his goals still stay the same — to become the top player in tennis history along with having the most Grand Slam titles, and he still has the drive and desire to achieve the goal.
Djokovic shared his thoughts on the setback and his continued pursue of being the best of the best in a post-match interview after the final.
“If I thought that it was too late, I would have ended my career today. But I do not think it is too late, I will keep on going as long as I have fuel in my legs and love and desire towards the sport.”
He also still has the mental fortitude to come back and stay at the elite level, especially with previous examples with Federer and Nadal taking dips in form in their careers, but still coming back to reel in more titles.
“One defeat, even though it is in a Grand Slam final, cannot destabilise me. I have developed a rather “thick skin”, I do not allow myself to be disturbed by various speculations. Myself and Nadal, and especially Federer – we have been written off many times, people were sending us into retirement, but we keep coming back and proving that we are the best in the world despite all the pressure.”
Djoko: “My professional goals stay the same – historic number one ranking and Grand Slam titles. If I achieve the former, which I hope to do next year, my focus will turn even more to Grand Slam tournaments in terms of approach, energy and schedule.” #RG20
— Tennis Majors (@Tennis_Majors) October 11, 2020
Djokovic also said he is going to look into his approach if he beats Federer’s record of weeks at No 1 ranking during next season, focusing more then on the Grand Slam tournaments “in terms of approach, energy and schedule.”